25,000 Taking Part In The Great South Run

It's the Great South Run today - around 25-thousand people are taking part in the 10-mile race around Portsmouth.

Dame Kelly Holmes is the offiical starter for the race, which begins on Southsea seafront.

One runner's already spent 2 days on the course - Fareham Royal Navy Ian Fleming's taking part for charity wearing a full diving suit weighing 14 stone.

Chief Petty Officer Ian Flemming from Titchfield Common was given special permission by organisers Bupa to start the event on Friday 26th October because of the time it's taken him to complete the course. He's doing the final mile today.

The suit is over a hundred years old!

"Because the suit is so heavy I've been told I can do five miles on Friday, four on the Saturday and then the final mile on the Sunday, along with all the other runners that day" he said.

"The suit is well over a hundred years old. Each boot is about 22 lbs each, the suit itself weighs about 10-12 lbs and the brass helmet is 50lbs. I'll also have a chest and back weight - both around 41lbs each. It'll be like carrying a fully grown heavy man for about 10 miles!"

Ian will have one of these on his chest and back

Ian will also have to wear a catheter as he wont be able to make toilet stops along the route.

"It's going to be really challenging and will probably take me about an hour and a half to cover each mile, so I'll be in the suit a long time each day.

"I'm expecting plenty of aches and pains and blisters - I think my feet will suffer the most!"

He's hoping to raise aorund £5000 for the 'British Limbless Ex-Service Men's Association' (Blesma).

"When it gets hard I'll just think of the injured troops I'm doing this for and I'm sure they'll inspire me to keep going."

If you want to sponsor Ian click HERE

The brass helmet Ian will wear

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